I've been helping out with a Thomson Reuter's Youth Programming class (in Rochester NY) which is just finishing up its first session in which we taught ~10 12-14 year olds some basic programming using python. I love making software - the collaborative process, the joining of ideas, the realization through code. I'd like to see the next generation of kids get a head start w/ making software, especially my own kid.
Unfortunately, computer programming isn't viewed as exciting or powerful or interesting. I know my own in laws can't understand how I can "sit behind a desk all day". But they totally "get" sitting down to read a good book for days on end or even cooler, sitting down to WRITE a book. They appreciate beautiful buildings and bridges. Computer programming is akin to all these activities. And for those just starting out, learning to program can a bit difficult to break into. It took many years after college before I had caught the programming bug. Before then, I was happy to punch the clock at the end of the day. Now I find myself not wanting to punch out.
The children of today are very fortunate to have so many great resources to learn about computers and programming. The video above from CodeOrg is a great place to get started. Every time I watch that video I feel inspired to help others "catch the bug" - to become makers of software.
earn more: http://www.code.org/learn
Help CodeOrg by making a donation: http://www.code.org/help